Army Reservist Brad K. Torgersen eloquently attempts to get Reggie Rivers to see sweet reason; a losing battle, but a valiant one nonetheless.
Not all former athletes are as clue-immune as Mr. Rivers, however. Laker Legend Kareem Abdul-Jabbar has co-authored a book called Brothers in Arms: The Epic Story of the 761St Tank Battalion, WWII's Forgotten Heroes, chronicling the exploits of this battalion, the first black armored unit ever, serving during World War II. (Prior to its existence, all-black units had been support units, i.e. food service, supply, etc.)
Lots of irony located in this story: a Muslim (Abdul-Jabbar) celebrates the exploits of some of our soldiers who were known as...the Black Panthers. Here’s more from the article:
At Fort Hood, a young lieutenant fresh out of UCLA in the 761st was nearly court-martialed for refusing to move to the back of a bus. His commander refused to approve the court-martial, but the lieutenant was transferred to another unit and never saw combat. He missed his chance to be a war hero. But the man -- Jackie Robinson -- became a household name a few years later as the first black player in Major League Baseball.And more:
Recognition came slowly. In 1978, the 761st Tank Battalion received a Presidential Unit Citation. In 1997, 53 years after giving his life on the battlefield, Staff Sgt. Rivers, whose family settled in the East Bay, was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor.(Thanks to Booker Rising)